How to be a more cautious motorcyclist this summer

Posted on June 18, 2020

Many local riders look forward to taking in the Utah summer air through motorcycling each year. As you return to more regular use of your bike during the warmer months, it’s important to not forget about safety ahead of and during each ride.

Sadly, anyone can fall victim to a fatal crash. To prevent from becoming part of a statistic, there are reinforcements you can make to your bike, your wardrobe and your habits.

Freshen up your bike

As you dust off your bike for the season or put in more miles this summer, it’s crucial you service your bike as needed. This can include checking bike functions before heading out, topping off oils and fluids, examining tire pressure and checking for any wear and tear of the tires.

Not taking care of your bike properly can leave you stranded on the road or cause an accident. For example, if your tires are bald and you keep riding regardless, it will take you longer to come to a complete stop. In turn, when you have to break suddenly to avoid crashing into a driver, animal or other object on the road, you might not be able to do so soon enough without new tires.

Brighten up your riding attire

Unlike driving a car, motorcycle riding requires special gear — a helmet, gloves, boots, jackets and more. One thing many bikers don’t consider is how beneficial brightly colored gear or clothing can be. Wearing bright or reflective clothing and accessories helps other motorists see you and can prevent crashes.

You can increase your visibility in the day time with fluorescent colors, like orange or yellow. And at night you can incorporate clothing with reflective elements. You can also deck out your bike with extra reflectors, reflective tape or auxiliary lights, that way you beam brightly from every angle.

Change up your driving habits

If you aren’t driving in a professional motorcycle race, the best way for motorcyclists to take the streets is through defensive driving. Defensive driving means you are staying well aware of your surroundings, making careful maneuvers and anticipating potential hazards. A few ways to do this with every motorcycle ride, is by taking extra care near motorists making left turns, staying out of blind spots as much as possible and checking the weather and for potential road work or closures before your ride.

Just a little extra preparation and care can keep you behind the wheel for many more motorcycle seasons.